As early as six o'clock in the morning,
sallow faces peeping through its barred windows had descried other faces within, bending over measures of wine.
despite anything to the contrary
Notwithstanding an unusual flow of company, the master of the wine- shop was not visible.
impossible to hear; imperceptible by the ear
Games at cards languished, players at dominoes musingly built towers with them, drinkers drew figures on the tables with spilt drops of wine, Madame Defarge herself picked out the pattern on her sleeve with her toothpick, and saw and heard something
inaudible and invisible a long way off.
in a softened tone
Defarge closed the door carefully, and spoke in a
incapable of failure or error
Again the mender of roads went through the whole performance; in which he ought to have been perfect by that time, seeing that it had been the
infallible resource and indispensable entertainment of his village during a whole year.
hurl or throw violently
Ah, but he would be well content to
precipitate himself over the hill-side once again, as on the evening when he and I first encountered, close to the same spot!"
Observant of his unwillingness to
mar the effect by opening it again, Defarge said, "Go on, Jacques."
of imposing height; especially standing out above others
There I see him, high up, behind the bars of a
lofty iron cage, bloody and dusty as last night, looking through.
strip the skin off
For, he contended with himself that it was impossible to foresee what that lady might pretend next; and he felt assured that if she should take it into her brightly ornamented head to pretend that she had seen him do a murder and afterwards
flay the victim, she would infallibly go through with it until the play was played out.
in a friendly manner
MADAME DEFARGE and monsieur her husband returned
amicably to the bosom of Saint Antoine, while a speck in a blue cap toiled through the darkness, and through the dust, and down the weary miles of avenue by the wayside, slowly tending towards that point of the compass where the chateau of Monsieur the Marquis, now in his grave, listened to the whispering trees.
Compare with the vocabulary word "amiably" (in Part 3).
of or relating to the sense of smell
olfactory sense was by no means delicate, but the stock of wine smelt much stronger than it ever tasted, and so did the stock of rum and brandy and aniseed.
with care and persistence
Next noontide saw the admirable woman in her usual place in the wine-shop, knitting away
a preceding occurrence or cause or event
It was the first time it had ever been so complemented, and Madame Defarge knew enough of its
antecedents to know better.
cause to lose one's composure
"It is all the same," said the spy, airily, but
discomfited too: "good day!"
the attribute of being short or fleeting
He had had it conveyed to him, in an accidental touch of his wife's elbow as she knitted and warbled, that he would do best to answer, but always with
furnish with a frame of iron bars
I have seen her image in the moonlight often, as I now see you; except that I never held her in my arms; it stood between the little
grated window and the door.
This word is used several times in A Tale of Two Cities. It is a repeated symbol that tries to bring up the state of imprisonment, which is an important theme in the book.
being of questionable authenticity
The marriage was to
make no change in their place of residence; they had been able to extend it, by taking to themselves the upper rooms formerly belonging to the
apocryphal invisible lodger, and they desired nothing more.
firm in purpose or belief
A more remarkable face in its quiet,
resolute, and guarded struggle with an unseen assailant, was not to be beheld in all the wide dominions of sleep, that night.
a period of fourteen consecutive days
You leave your good father, my dear, in hands as earnest and as loving as your own; he shall be taken every conceivable care of; during the next
fortnight, while you are in Warwickshire and thereabouts, even Tellson's shall go to the wall (comparatively speaking) before him.
in a secretive manner
The only ray of hope that Mr. Lorry could discover, was, that he sometimes
furtively looked up without being asked.
moving quickly and lightly
The secret was well kept, and Lucie was unconscious and happy; but he could not fail to observe that the shoemaker, whose hand had been a little out at first, was growing dreadfully skilful, and that he had never been so intent on his work, and that his hands had never been so
nimble and expert, as in the dusk of the ninth evening.
precisely and clearly expressed or readily observable
explicit," said the Doctor.
conclude by reasoning
infer," glancing at his hands again, "in the resumption of some old pursuit connected with the shock?"
make less active or intense
It was not for his friend to
abate that confidence.
the quality of being faithful
He was not improved in habits, or in looks, or in manner; but there was a certain rugged air of
fidelity about him, which was new to the observation of Charles Darnay.
marked by or showing hopelessness
forlorn wanderer then pacing the dark streets, could have heard her innocent disclosure, and could have seen the drops of pity kissed away by her husband from the soft blue eyes so loving of that husband, he might have cried to the night -- and the words would not have parted from his lips for the first time --
clouded as with sediment
Mr. Stryver shouldered his way through the law, like some great engine forcing itself through
turbid water, and dragged his useful friend in his wake, like a boat towed astern.
a situation from which extrication is difficult
As the boat so favoured is usually in a rough
plight, and mostly under water, so, Sydney had a swamped life of it.
a piece of equipment or a tool used for a specific purpose
Madame's resolute right hand was occupied with an axe, in place of the usual softer
implements, and in her girdle were a pistol and a cruel knife.
the overflowing of a body of water onto normally dry land
Their three heads had been close together during this brief discourse, and it had been as much as they could do to hear one another, even then: so tremendous was the noise of the living ocean, in its irruption into the Fortress, and its
inundation of the courts and passages and staircases.
Compare with the vocabulary word "deluge" (in Part 3). The image in this sentence of the sounds going into the fortress, up the stairs and through the halls, is a direct metaphor to what had happened before the events in the book, when the lower classes rushed into the same spaces when they were taking over the country and executing the aristocracy.
a small or moderate or token amount
HAGGARD SAINT ANTOINE had had only one exultant week, in which to soften his
modicum of hard and bitter bread to such extent as he could, with the relish of fraternal embraces and congratulations, when Madame Defarge sat at her counter, as usual, presiding over the customers.
a social class separated by distinctions of hereditary rank
No. The change consisted in the appearance of strange faces of low
caste, rather than in the disappearance of the high
caste, chiselled, and otherwise beautified and beautifying features of Monseigneur.
reduced in strength
The bronze face, the shaggy black hair and beard, the coarse woollen red cap, the rough medley dress of home-spun stuff and hairy skins of beasts, the powerful frame
attenuated by spare living, and the sullen and desperate compression of the lips in sleep, inspired the mender of roads with awe.
fortification consisting of a low wall
The result of that conference was, that Gabelle again withdrew himself to his housetop behind his stack of chimneys; this time resolved, if his door were broken in (he was a small Southern man of retaliative temperament), to pitch himself head foremost over the
parapet, and crush a man or two below.
Again: Tellson's was a
munificent house, and extended great liberality to old customers who had fallen from their high estate.
potentially existing but not presently evident or realized
And it was such vapouring all about his ears, like a troublesome confusion of blood in his own head, added to a
latent uneasiness in his mind, which had already made Charles Darnay restless, and which still kept him so.
expressive of low opinion
held the letter out inquiringly; and Monseigneur looked at it, in the person of this plotting and indignant refugee; and Monseigneur looked at it in the person of that plotting and indignant refugee; and This, That, and The Other, all had something
disparaging to say, in French or in English, concerning the Marquis who was not to be found.
tear down so as to make flat with the ground
Nor is that all; my house has been destroyed --
razed to the ground.
"Raze" can be confused with the word, raise, but the meaning, in a way, is almost the opposite.
"From this prison here of horror, whence I every hour tend nearer and nearer to destruction, I send you, Monsieur heretofore the Marquis, the assurance of my
dolorous and unhappy service.
confidently optimistic and cheerful
Then, that glorious vision of doing good, which is so often the
sanguine mirage of so many good minds, arose before him, and he even saw himself in the illusion with some influence to guide this raging Revolution that was running so fearfully wild.